With all that shoreline, it’s no surprise that Maine has so many lighthouses (more than 60). In fact, the state boasts Quoddy Lighthouse, the easternmost lighthouse in the United States where the sun first rises each day in the United States. Cape Neddick Lighthouse, better known as Nubble Light, and Portland Head Lighthouse are two of the nation’s most beloved and visited lighthouses. Spend your entire trip to Maine traveling along the coast, seeing how many lighthouses you can photograph, and make sure to stop at the Maine Lighthouse Museum and Discovery Center in Rockland, where you can see pictures of the ones you didn’t get to.
Another vacation idea is to tour Maine’s many state parks, which dot the state from top to tail. Spend the night on Maine’s crown with a stay at the Aroostook State Park, Maine’s first state park, where you can go canoeing, fish for brook trout and head out for a hike or travel south for a picnic at Vaughan Woods State Park in South Berwick, the southernmost state park in Maine. A total of 12 of Maine’s state parks offer camping, so feel free to stay awhile. For more information, visit www.visitmaine.com.
Summer in Maine is time for discovery
Every citizen and visitor should experience or learn more about these people, places, and things linked to Maine’s cultural identity:
Popham Colony: Fort Popham is a semi-circular granite fort that was never completed, though construction began in 1862 for use during the Civil War. Modifications were made and the fort was used again in the Spanish American War and in World War 1. Historical records conclude that fortifications, probably wooden, existed here and protected the Kennebec settlements during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. It was nearby that the English made their first attempt to colonize New England in 1607. (Maine.gov)
Patten Lumbermen’s Museum: The forests of northern Maine once supplied some of the best ship masts in the world and Bangor was once the largest shipping port for lumber in the world. Massive white pine trees were the wood of choice for the masts on many British and American ships, among others, and the vast northern Maine woods made the area one of the biggest suppliers of lumber for decades in the 1800s. More recently, paper mills, such as the former Great Northern Paper Company, and saw mills produce forest products including coated specialty papers and lumber, among many others, that continue to write the story of the history of logging in Maine. The Patten Lumbermen’s Museum was established to document Maine logging history, by preserving the logging heritage and accomplishments of early inhabitants of the state of Maine. Exihibits at the museum include some of Maine’s most notable contributions to the early mechanization of logging, including the Lombard Steam Hauler, Lombard Gas Hauler, and the Peavey Cant Dog. For more information, visit www.lumbermensmuseum.org. (Patten Lumbermen’s Museum)
Chowder with Maine Lobster:
1-½ pound Maine Lobster
4 cups dairy product
3 tablespoons butter
2 cups potatoes, diced medium
¼ cup onion, diced
¼ cup red pepper, diced
1 12-ounce package corn, frozen
1 teaspoon cumin, ground
½ teaspoon coriander, ground
½ teaspoon cayenne
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon parsley, fresh chopped
Steam the Maine Lobster. Chill and reserve the liquid.
Sauté the onions, peppers and spices in the butter until very lightly golden brown. This brings out the sweetness.
Add the potatoes and cooking water. Cook until potatoes are just tender.
Add the corn and simmer 2-3 minutes. Add the Maine Lobster and cream (or whichever dairy you like). Bring to one boil and correct the seasoning. At this point, you may add a little sherry.
Sprinkle with chopped parsley and some paprika if you like. For additional lobster recipes and more, visit the Maine Lobster Council at www.lobsterfrommaine.com.
Moose Mainea: May 14 through June 12, 2011, Moosehead Lake Region. Visit the Moosehead Lake Region Chamber of Commerce website for more information at www.mooseheadlake.org. The events take place during the time of the year when moose are most visible. This year’s events include the Moose River Canoe Race, Moosterpiece Craft Fair, Moose Mainea Kid’s Fun Day, Famous Moose Tales, a Quest Fest, and the Chamber of Commerce’s Annual Moose Photo Contest.
Wyeth clan: In June, 2009, the Maine State Legislature passed An Act to Designate July 12 as Wyeth Day in recognition of the birthday of Andrew Wyeth, one of America’s great artists. This annual observance has been established to honor Andrew Wyeth, who passed away on January 16, 2009, and who had long and lasting ties with this state. The Wyeth family – including Andrew, his father, illustrator N. C. Wyeth (1882-1945), and son Jamie Wyeth (1946- ) – has made strong contributions to the state’s artistic and cultural heritage. Jamie Wyeth still lives and works in Maine. It was at the Olson farm in Cushing, Maine, that Andrew Wyeth painted what is arguably his most famous image, Christina’s World, in 1948; over the next 50 years he continued to paint Maine people and places. Many of the works of art are part of the Farnsworth Art Museum collection in Rockland where a 19th century church has been transformed into the Wyeth Center. (Maine.gov)
Fly Rod Crosby: Born and raised in Philips in 1854, Cornelia “Fly Rod” Crosby was a writer, fly fisher, hunter, and outdoor enthusiast who worked for the Maine Central Railroad promoting the sporting life in Maine at the turn of the century. She held the first Maine Guide license issued and allegedly was the the first woman to legally shoot a caribou in Maine and rumored to have shot against Annie Oakley in a sharpshooting competition. Her column “Fly Rod’s Note Book” was syndicated throughout the Eastern United States. She died in 1946. (Maine Memory Network)
Baxter State Park: There are over 40 peaks and ridges besides Katahdin in the Park. The trail system features over 215 miles of trails popular with hikers, mountain climbers and naturalists. Baxter State Park operates eight roadside campgrounds and two backcountry campgrounds. There are also numerous individual backcountry sites for backpackers. The Park is now a premier year-round destination for outdoor enthusiasts. Roughly 60,000 people visit the park in the summer months. Some stay for 10 nights, some visit only for one day. For more information about the park and its history, visit www.baxterstateparkauthority.com.